Story Retelling with the help of Prompts (Oral) - Orchids
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Story Writing

Retelling a Story with Hints for Class 5 English

Retelling is part of reading and writing skills that includes determining the major parts of a story in order, characters, problem, setting & solution. Retelling a story with the aid of oral prompts develops sequencing, thinking, vocabulary, and visualisation skills in a student.

In this learning concept, students will learn:

  • What is story retelling?
  • Features of story retelling.
  • Story Retelling Prompts with examples.

All the learning concepts covered for Class 5 English have illustrations, mind maps, and examples. Students can check their understanding by solving the two printable PDF story writing with hints worksheets. The solutions to these exercises are also available in PDF format.


Story retelling is presenting the story as read or heard from a source without missing any necessary detail or adding any additional unnecessary information.
It is a short method to recall, arrange, and outline a story.
The uses of Story Retelling are to:

  • Enhance comprehension skills.
  • Help to understand the structure of the text.
  • Identify the main idea.
Features of retelling a story

Features of a Story Retelling

The following parameters must be kept in mind while retelling a story. They are:

  1. Setting : The setting comprises of the background in which the story is set. It describes ‘where’ and ‘when’ the story takes place. The location, the time, the weather and social conditions are all parts of the setting of a story. Time here means whether the story is related to the present or past.
  2. Major Characters: The thing that comes immediately after setting is the characters. The names of the characters are important. It is important to determine the main characters in a story.
  3. Order of Important Events: The events in the story are those happenings that are most significant with respect to the theme of the story. It can be an incident, change of a place, death of someone, getting a lot of money, trusting someone, falling from a place, height etc. Usually, it is seen that such happenings affect the character and impact the course of action followed by him.
  4. Define Features of the Characters: There should be a minimum description of the physical appearance of the characters like how they appear, what they are, how they speak and even any character trait can be mentioned too. It is important to consider if there’s anything that one can relate with the characters.
  5. Problem: The problem is an area of the story that shows a difficulty faced by the characters that is solved at the end. The solution may sometimes be positive or negative but usually draws an end to the problem. It often deals with the question ‘what’, i.e., what happened that changed the course of the story. Since it is one of the most significant parts of the story describing it properly is essential.
  6. Solution: The story mostly ends with a solution. Most happy ending stories make sure that their protagonist wins at the end. However, there are many stories where the protagonist is made to suffer due to either his own action or unknown reason. The solution can be a cure, a reunion of friends, a victory over an opponent or even a permanent loss.

Story Retelling Prompts

Let us have a look at the prompts for story retelling. They are:

  1. What was the setting(s)?
  2. How did the story start?
  3. What happened in the beginning?
  4. On whom was the story all about?
  5. When did the story take place?
  6. What happened next? Then what happened?
  7. What happened to the main character so far?
  8. What did the main character do next?
  9. What was the problem the character faced?
  10. What did the character do to resolve the problem?
  11. How did the main character resolve the problem?
  12. How did the story finally come to an end?

Common Mistakes

  1. To retell a story correctly, you first need to know it. To understand what the story is all about and then retell it.
  2. Do not add any new information to the original story. While retelling a story, ensure you do not add anything that was not mentioned in the actual story.
  3. Do not forget to determine the basic theme, important characters, problem, events and conclusion of the story. Since the retelling of a story will be based on these aspects, you must be very clear about them.
  4. Identify the unique part of the story, as that will help you to retell it properly.
how to retell a story anchor chart
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